Doctorate in Community College Leadership’s Ninth Cohort Enters First Semester of Coursework

Ferris State University
PHOTO CAPTION: A cohort of 23 education professionals from six states has begun its pursuit of Doctorate in Community College Leadership degrees through Ferris State University. This cohort will continue in year-round instruction with intentions to offer dissertations and graduate in the Spring 2021 semester. (Note: Ferris professional advisor Jenice Winowiecki was not available for the group photo shown.)


Twenty-three education professionals have begun a three-year cycle of learning and interaction, as the ninth cohort in Ferris State University’s Doctorate in Community College Leadership has entered its first semester of instruction.

DCCL Assistant Director Megan Biller said the program is encouraged by the regional, even national scope of this group of students, as they come from six states, including Florida, Illinois Kansas and Tennessee.

“This is the first time we have chosen to place our face-to-face instruction in greater proximity to Detroit Metropolitan Airport, as all previous cohorts took up that learning in Grand Rapids,” Biller said. “We welcome the support of current and former DCCL students at Schoolcraft College, in Livonia, which is where those classes are now based.”

There are 11 DCCL students from Michigan, including Ferris’ Pre-College Specialist Leah Melichar and professional advisor from the university, Jenice Ferris State UniversityWinowiecki.  A group of five professionals from Ohio are on the staff of Sinclair Community College, in Dayton, with seven students in total hailing from that neighbor state. Biller said the DCCL program enjoys a continued relationship with Sinclair CC through Cohort Nine.

“Many of our students said they learned about the program through word of mouth,” Biller said. “With our student cohort at Harper College, in Palatine, Illinois, and the Texas Cohort at Lone Star College, near Houston, there are now 23 states represented among our current students and graduates.”

DCCL students pursue their degrees with three semesters of face-to-face and online instruction each year, with Cohort Nine students continuing in this pattern prior to participating in comprehensive interviews and presentations in the Spring 2021 semester, with their commencement coming that May.

“We have a wide variety of student backgrounds in this cohort,” Biller said. “They indicated they look forward to applying what they learn to their current and expected professional situations.”

Biller said the DCCL program suits both the career intentions of its students and serves as an opportunity for their employers to invest in staff so their operations can benefit from the professional development.

“It is important for our students to find support from within their institution as they take up this learning,” Biller said. “The cohort becomes like a family and, as the DCCL program grows and continues, this group may find their peers to be important resources, very close by.”

Ferris began its DCCL program in June 2010. The student cohort at Harper College began its classwork in the Spring 2016 semester and the Texas cohort at Lone Star College began instruction with the Spring 2018 semester.

Click Doctorate in Community College Leadership for more information.